We were at home for about 2 weeks getting everything ready and making one last visit to friends and family before heading back to the far east. We just jumped on the plane, planning to somehow get back to Japan on Space-A, no real plan other than that. The Patriot Express only flies on Thursday and we have no plan so we head to Travis figuring the more time we have to catch a flight the better our chances are of getting something to Okinawa. Travis to Hickam or Guam, but Alaska and Korea weren’t out of the picture. So, we manage to make Travis to Yokota…to Okinawa.
Hannah was in school right away and the year progressed pretty well. Not ever having had a teenager full-time before there were quite a few adjustments that were made on both sides but we made it through the year without too many bumps or bruises. The best part is she met a couple of really nice girls and became good friends.
Just before the end of the school year when we were trying to get the flights figured out for her trip home she started to think about staying another year for 8th grade. Having 2 famlies that she loves is so hard to make a decision and did she ever fret. She made lists, talked to us, her friends, thought, cried, weighed, and pondered. Finally it was time to talk to her mom. Hannah talked, I talked, A. talked. We prayed, argued, thought, cried, weighed and prayed. Three weeks later A. had decided to let Hannah make the decision, and she decided to stay.
A week ago I get an e-mail from A. The suspected but dreaded e-mail in which she says she missed Hannah too much to let her spend another year with us in Japan. I called and tried to argue, but really how can I argue about it? I feel exactly the same way except the other way around. The last year has been an answer to prayer — I’ve bristled and yelled, I’ve been proud and embarassed, I’ve taught and learned, but the most important thing this last year has been…getting to spend a whole year with my little girl and getting to see and know the woman she is becoming. As well as a lesson in God answering prayers, somtimes He says yes, sometimes He says no and at other times He says wait 12 years…. We will keep praying and preparing for the next step if there is one…who knows…high school…maybe….
This picture sums up how we are feeling about Hannah both going home for the summer and not coming back for this year of school.